Ever heard someone say (or even said yourself! – yikes!) “I’ve done a spin class today, so I can eat this cake!” Or “I haven’t done a workout today, so I won’t have a glass of wine tonight”?
This type of relationship between food and exercise makes what is or isn’t consumed a reward for doing exercise or a punishment for not. Both are unhealthy attitudes that can lead to oscillating between binging and restricting diets and exercise habits, that can leave you nutrient poor and feeling burned out physically.
We need to employ the ‘B’ word …no not Boring – Balance!
It would be boring though if we never had a piece of birthday cake again or a pudding on a special occasion. An equal balance is of course 50/50 but in this instance, to make sure we keep our waistline stats in check, we need an 80/20 ratio between eating well the majority of the time and the remaining 20% gives us a little leeway to indulge in the things we enjoy every now and then, that doesn’t mean to say we have to be literal about it and eat rubbish for two days every week, see it as more of a buffer zone thats there for when parties, holidays and weddings happen.
The other aspect of balance here is to see exercise as something we do to remain healthy, acknowledging all of it’s benefits and not because you over-ate at the weekend. Look for a style of exercise you really enjoy, this may mean thinking out the box a little, for instance, if you hate the gym but love being out in nature, get a dog with lots of energy that needs plenty of long walks, or if you prefer to swim but find lane swims dull, challenge yourself to try open water swimming, the options are endless but ultimately remember we need exercise regardless of what we’ve eaten and vice versa!
– This article has been published in the October edition of Life Magazines – http://www.lifemagazines.co.uk